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Finding Your Balance

endocrinesystem_420x390_enilKnow More About Your Endocrine System

Your endocrine system is all about balance, and is an extremely important system in the body, regulating metabolism, growth and development, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction sleep and mood and much else.

“Endocrine” comes from the Greek words “endo” (within) and “crinis” (to secrete).

This system comprises a collection of glands that produce hormones to regulate several functions and affects almost every organ and cell in the body. In general, the glands select and remove materials from the blood, process them, and then secrete the finished chemical product for use somewhere else in the body. Cellular metabolism, reproduction, sexual development, sugar and mineral homeostasis, heart rate, and digestion are among the many processes regulated by the actions of hormones.

Included in endocrine system are the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, pineal gland, thyroid gland, parathyroid glands, adrenal glands, pancreas, gonads (ovaries or testes) and thymus. In addition to these organs in the endocrine system, there are other organs in our body that produce hormones. They include the heart, kidneys, digestive system and placenta to name a few.

Off balance
Imbalanced hormone levels indicate a problem with the endocrine system. Stress, infection and changes in the blood’s fluid and electrolyte balance can also influence hormone levels.

>5 most common endocrine disorders:
Diabetes

In this case, the body does not properly process glucose due to the lack of insulin. The pancreas is responsible for making insulin. As a result of the lack of insulin, glucose stays in the blood instead of helping the cells.

Thyroid disorders
The thyroid produces hormones that tell the body how fast to work. When too much is produced, your system work in overdrive (hyperthyroidism), when too little is produced, your body becomes sluggish (hypothyroidism).

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
Women with this condition have enlarged ovaries containing many small cysts, that interfere with regular menstruation and fertility. It can also cause high levels of male hormones (androgens) that result in hair growth, weight gain and acne.

Low testosterone
Hypogonadism results in a decrease in sexual desire, erectile dysfunction, shrinking testes and hair loss. It may also be accompanied by less energy, depression, muscle weakness and sleep problems.

Osteoporosis
This is the thinning of the bones and the loss of bone mass. Women are at a higher risk because with age comes declining levels of estrogen. High levels of thyroid hormone, parathyroid hormone and cortisol can also disrupt the balance of bone rebuilding. In men low levels of testosterone can also lead to osteoporosis.

Finding Balance

While some endocrine disorders are inherited or have unknown causes, others are related to modifiable lifestyle factors.  A simple blood test conducted by a doctor will tell you if you have an endocrine disorder or not. While symptoms of endocrine disorders are bothersome, they can generally be treated by correcting the hormone imbalance. This may be done by means of bio-identical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) that uses non-synthetic hormones to balance yours.

You may also find prevent endocrine disorders by

  • Eating a balanced, healthy diet
  • Living a healthy lifestyle that includes regular physical activity

Attaining a balanced endocrine system is possible.  At Santé Sanctuary, we offer a host of treatments and programs to help your endocrine system and quality of life regain balance.